Wednesday, August 10, 2011

VO Equipment for Video

You've heard those amazing voices on documentaries and movie trailers, the guys that sound like they carry their lungs around in a wheel barrow? Voice over talent is something not many can teach you, you either have it or you don't.
But you can get inexpensive equipment that will make the voice you have sound even better.

When laying down tracks for a documentary or production you may want your narration to sound rich and bold. Using just any old microphone, especially little mics for computers will not give you a professional sound. For under $100.00 you can create a sound system that will bring you the crisp vocals you're looking for. Without breaking the bank.

Check out the Behringer 802 Microphone Mixer {$49.99} , it has EQ, FX and trim controls that will give your voice a true, resonance sound. Couple the mixer with a Behringer C-1 {$35.00} Microphone and you can have a truly awesome audio setup.

The Behringer 802 features "British EQ", a very warm tone that brings out the sizzle in your voice. 130 dB dynamic range for plenty of headroom and with up to 60 dB of gain and a +48 volt phantom power supply. Its EQ circuitry is made in Britain, which are renowned throughout the world for their warm and musical sound character. Even with extreme gain settings, these equalizers provide outstanding audio.

It's best not to mix brands, Behringer has made these compatible

The Behringer C-1 Condenser mic is an affordable, high-quality, durable transducer type microphone. Thanks to its cardioid (heart-shaped) pattern, the C-1 microphone picks up your source signal while rejecting off-axis sounds that can ruin an otherwise perfect recording. With its pressure-gradient, shock-mounted transducer and gold-plated XLR output, the C-1 is very neutral sounding and truly delivers on the promise of noise-free transmission.

Put the two together, add a cable from the mixer to your computer sound card, a microphone stand and throw in some basic sound proofing and you have a great VO setup.
One idea I had for sound proofing is to place foam on a tri-folding science project board and set it up with the mic and a copy stand to deflect outside sounds. Even some old carpet will help deafen unwanted sounds.

This set up would also be good for pod-casts and any recording needs, even singing or vocal tracks you can add to music in your video production.

Plus if you are broadcasting a netcast or program over the internet, either live or recorded, having a good microphone and mixer setup will add more depth to the sound quality of your show.

The Voice Of God

Get good at voice overs and you may find clients will pay you for your talent and skill. Everyone can talk, but not everyone can talk and sound like a pro. Who knows, you could be the next Don LaFontaine!

But seriously, a good mic and mixer set up can bring extra quality to your productions and for about $100 plus some cables and ingenuity you can build a nice VO booth. If that is still too steep then consider Behringers small mixer, the 502, 5 channel mixer at $37.91. Same sound, just fewer inputs.
Either way with an approach to good sound and a little vocal coaching you can have pro narration for your productions!


Samual said...

Good written post. I was really looking for such information. Don't be tempted to go for a trendy-looking, colorful camera if you really want to buy a less cool looking one that does more of what you want.

Camera crane

George said...

Great little article! I purchased the Behringer 802 and the C-1 mic. I also picked up online different configurations for hooking it up to your computer. If you do get the Behringer 802, be aware that there are NO USB or 1/8" inputs or outputs on it, so you must purchase additional adapters and cable to make your hookups. Once it's done, it makes your voice sound great! Thanks for the Behringer plug... I never would have thought about this company had it no been for the article.